Cadwalader has long been a place for talented associates to launch their careers. With a 230-year history, Cadwalader, Wickersham & Taft LLP is the oldest Wall Street firm still in existence, and offers its associates strong training and both formal and informal mentorship as well as early hands-on experience. Among its practices are capital markets, corporate, financial restructuring, financial services, litigation, and real estate. The firm is a well-established presence in Charlotte, London, its headquarters of New York, and...

Firm Stats


Total No. Attorneys (2021)

250 - 500


No. of Partners Named (2021)



Featured Rankings

Vault Law 100


No. of 1st Year Associates Hired (2020)



No. of Summer Associates (2021)

19 (all 2Ls)


Base Salary

Class of 2021: $202,500

Vault Verdict

Cadwalader takes academics, experience, and personality into consideration during the interview process. Associates describe the culture here as collegial, and the firm sponsors a number of social events to foster relationships. Partners are respectful of associates and are transparent when it comes to individual performance and feedback. Transparency into firmwide performance and decision-making, however, has fallen short at times. Associates report they are busy, and many work long hours, but it comes with much-appreciated flexibility. Associates can count 100 “qualified non-billable” hours toward the 2,000-billable-hour requirement, though some wish it was more. Compensation is top of market, but some associates gripe that recent special bonuses were contingent on billables. As...

About the Firm

Established more than 225 years ago, Cadwalader, Wickersham & Taft LLP is the oldest Wall Street firm still in existence. Among its practices are capital markets, corporate, financial restructuring, litigation, and real estate. The firm is a well-established presence in Charlotte; London; New York; and Washington, DC.

Dating Back to the Days of Washington . . . As in George

Cadwalader was founded in 1792, when folks were still sealing letters with wax and writing with quills. But the firm revolutionized law firms by doing away with the old system of unpaid law clerkships and establishing the role of the associate. 

The present-day Cadwalader forged a niche in the early New York legal field by working on commercial claims, litigation, maritime law, and rea...

Associate Reviews

  • “The culture is strong. People genuinely like working with each other and socializing outside of work.”
  • “The firm sponsors both educational and social events. The affinity groups sponsor events and coffee hours, and associates take it upon themselves to organize small group get-togethers for informal gatherings.”
  • “When we're all in the office, we're a collegial group. For as hard charging as we are, we do make a point of socializing, both at planned events and spontaneously in the halls. During the pandemic, the firm has done a number of fun social activities over WebEx where partners and associates with unique talents have a chance to entertain and teach.”
  • “The Charlotte office has monthly social events (prior to the pandemic), and each lawyer is provided with $250 per quarter to spend on social/mentoring events with their mentors.”

From the Firm: This budget is applicable in every Cadwalader office.

Diversity at Cadwalader, Wickersham & Taft LLP

"Mission and Motivation Cadwalader is committed to fostering a diverse and inclusive work environment that supports the development and advancement of individuals of all background, so as to better serve our clients and our communities. The Cadwalader Center for Diversity & Inclusion (CCDI) serves as a central resource for the Firm's diversity programs, initiatives and policies, and aims to enhance gender, racial/ethnic and LGBT diversity and inclusion within the Firm to create an unrivalled environment that..."

Getting Hired Here

  • “The firm is looking for candidates with strong academic backgrounds who also have experience working on teams, managing competing demands, etc. Diversity is a strong focus.”
  • “Schools, fit, and diversity are all considerations.”
  • “We seek top-notch candidates at all levels, with training (including anti-bias training) for anyone who will interview candidates.”
  • “We typically go for top candidates at local NY schools and candidates from the top law schools in the country. We receive training for the interview process. I think they do a good job.”

Perks & Benefits